Unions across Nigeria began the Day 2 of nationwide strike on Tuesday protesting against the removal of fuel subsidy. The first day of the strike claimed three lives as President Goodluck Jonathan and workers remained firm on their position.
On Tuesday, huge clusters of demonstrators began to gather at meeting points across various Nigerian cities. The nationwide strike portrays how much the158 million inhabitants of Nigeria are furious with the decision of removal of fuel subsidy, their most visible welfare benefit.
Private and public banks, MNC’s, schools, colleges remained closed on Day 2 of the nationwide strike but some market places and stalls were seen open. To provide an insight, 70% of Nigeria falls below poverty line and survives on less than $2 a day.
As per Reuters report “I am part of the demonstrations, I hate the subsidy removal, it is hurting everyone but I have to come to work today,” said Gladice, standing outside her fast food restaurant in the capital Abuja. “I hope the strikes will make the government change its mind but I really don’t know if they will back down.”
— Jon Gambrell (@jongambrellAP) January 10, 2012
The multi-lane highways of the heaving commercial hub Lagos, usually notorious for their traffic jams, were largely empty. On the other hand in Lagos on Tuesday angry youth erected a burning roadblock outside luxury enclave demonstrating protests over fuel prices.
The flaming tires and debris sent thick, dark smoke over part of Ikoyi Island, which houses who’s who of Nigeria – from, diplomats to rich businessmen. It also signaled the danger of spiraling violence as protests continue in the country of more than 160 million people.
Young blood of Nigeria in particular got more furious after Nigeria police shot three young protesters to death on Monday.
As reported by AP “This is oligarchy, this is not a democracy!” shouted Danjuma Mohammed, as he stood before the fire holding rocks in his hands. “We are no longer afraid of you! We are ready for war!”